Kurt O.

When I was seven, I snuck into a swimming pool in my apartment complex. The pool was closed, since it was before it opened that morning. I don’t remember what I was doing before that though. I went into the shallow end, just wearing shorts that day, and started wading around. I was not supposed to be in the pool by myself as I couldn’t swim, so I was watching and looking around for anyone who would get me into trouble like my mom or neighbors who knew her. I saw only one middle-aged Asian man out in front of his apartment.

I was wading and bouncing off the bottom of the pool when I carelessly bounced too close to the deep-end and was alarmed when my toes barely touched the floor. My next upward motion took me too far out into the deep-end and I could no longer touch bottom. I remember trying to scream and sucking in a ton of water that burned inside my lungs.

Then things get a little choppy. I remember being under water and then it seemed, instantly but gently, I was floating slowly upwards. I looked over my shoulder and turned around to see the pool from I would guess about 60 feet above it. I could see what I thought was me under the water in the deep-end. I should also mention that before I turned around, all I could see was a soft but brilliant, white shade of light. Then I was still looking down. Things were getting darker and I began to turn around again just to look around. Throughout all of this, I had feelings of being very content, confident, completely free, or something like that. It’s hard to explain. I also felt a loving feeling, more like I loved everything rather than being in love. It all felt very normal, like no big deal. In some instant, as I was turning around, all I remember is waking up, lying on my back next to the pool.

I had scratches on my right side, as if I had been dragged on the concrete. There was a lot of water on the ground around me and wet footprints on the ground leading away from me, towards the gate around the pool, in the direction of the Asian man’s apartment. I was afraid I was going to get into trouble, so I immediately jumped up and ran home.

I really think that Asian guy saw me drowning and jumped the fence, jumped in the pool and pulled me out. I think he saw I wasn’t breathing and ran to call an ambulance and I woke up while he was gone. I’m sure he saved my life no doubt, but I never thanked him or talked to him at all. Actually I don’t think I ever saw him again. That’s about all I remember about it.

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